Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
One name to keep an eye on in the Class of 2010 is forward Markus Kennedy of St. Patrick High School in Elizabeth, N.J.
The latest big man to play for head coach Kevin Boyle, Kennedy already holds ofers from Villanova, Rutgers and Xavier, according to his Team New Jersey ABC coach Matt Pauls. The 6-8, 230-pound Kennedy also has heavy interest from Miami, St. John’s, Ohio State, Michigan State and Penn State.
“Markus has great hands, excellent footwork, nice touch from 15-17 feet, and is a strong passer for his size,” Pauls said. “He needs to improve on the defensive end, and must get stronger and improve his endurance.”
Kennedy, a Philadelphia native who came to St. Pat’s as a sophomore, played alongside Kansas commit Quintrell Thomas last season, when the Celtics lost to Bob Hurley’s St. Anthony team in the Non-Public North B final at Rutgers.
“It was a good experience being around so many good players and learning from coach Boyle,” Kennedy recently told Justin Young of Rivals. “This whole year got me ready for next year. I learned from him that it’s important to keep the ball up and play strong. When you make your move, don’t always go to the middle. He said go to the baseline to play under the zone. Just little things like that.
“Quintrell taught me a lot. When we went to California, he didn’t have a great first game and then came back the next game and had 15 rebounds. He kept his head. That taught me a lot.”
Kennedy will be at a number of summer events, including the Hoop Group Showcase this weekend at Rutgers, the Reebok Summer Classic, West Virginia Jam Fest and Nike AAU Super Showcase in Orlando. Additionally, many NJABC team members will be at Eastern Invitational Camp July 5-8, and Eastern Team Camp.
“It’s a big year for Markus individually,” Boyle said. “If he can shed another 10-15 pounds, tone it up into muscle and get into better condition. If he’s able to accomplish that, he’s going to be a really good player. He had 18 points against Christ the King in the opening game of the Rutgers camp. He has trouble going back-to-back and sustaining intensity. He has trouble sustaining the intensity for a long time. If he can build that, that’s going to be a great help for himself and for our team.”
(Photo courtesy Alex Schwartz, Northstarbasketball.blogspot.com)
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.